Obesity is a strong indicator in the development of sleep apnea, a serious sleep disorder. About 85 % of those with sleep apnea are obese, and it is more common in men over age 40. Sleep apnea is associated with health consequences such as an increased risk of heart disease, stroke, and diabetes. Treatment for sleep apnea can effectively improve concentration, energy, and overall quality of life and put an end to snoring.

 Weight loss surgery at LAP-BAND VIP can effectively prevent, treat, or resolve sleep apnea and cause remission in up to 85 percent of patients.

Excess weight and sleep apnea are strongly correlated because obese people tend to have thicker tissue around the throat. This leads to tissue collapse in the airway, and sleep apnea is marked by disruptions in breathing which can last up to 60 seconds called apneas. During these apneas, a person will wake up to resume breathing, sometimes hundreds of times a night. 

Often, sleep apnea patients are unaware they have the condition but experience symptoms, such as decreased memory, excessive daytime fatigue, and irritability. In many instances, a bed partner will notice the condition when the patient snores loudly and wakes up frequently to gasp for breath before returning to sleep.

Before LAP-BAND candidates are eligible to proceed with surgery, they must undergo a sleep study to test for sleep apnea. Sleep apnea can complicate surgery due to the use of anesthesia because sedation causes relaxation of throat tissue which can cause obstruction of the airway. However, all surgeons at LAP-BAND VIP are Board Certified and certified by the makers of the LAP-BAND device, Allergan.

 Los Angeles weight loss surgeon Dr. Hooman Shabatian of LAP-BAND VIP recommends minimally invasive techniques such as the LAP-BAND surgery for obese patients. This surgery involves placing an adjustable, inflatable silicone band around the upper part of the stomach which restricts the amount of food a patient can eat and controls hunger. With full commitment on the part of the patient, including adherence to a diet plan and exercise program, individuals can expect to lose up to two pounds per week.

 “The LAP-BAND is an appropriate procedure to address sleep apnea because it is minimally-invasive, which means the operation is quicker and requires less anesthesia,” said Dr. Shabatian. “Patients usually lose between 50 and 80 percent of their excess body weight in the first 18 months following surgery as the fatty tissue around the upper airway decrease, which eliminates the collapse of the airway which occurs during apneas.”

 After the weight loss procedure, most patients notice a drastic improvement in their sleep apnea symptoms, such as less snoring and better daytime alertness. Up to 85 percent of weight loss surgery patients experience remission of sleep apnea within a year after surgery according to a 2004 study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. However, patients must maintain their weight loss or it is likely that sleep apnea will return.

LAP-BAND surgery is only considered when other methods to treat sleep apnea have proven unsuccessful, and patients must be willing to make serious, long-term commitment to lifestyle changes.

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Filed under: FatigueObesityObstructive Sleep ApneaSleepSleep ApneaSleep Apnea EffectsSleep Apnea NewsSleep Apnea SurgerySleep Apnea TreatmentSleep Disordered BreathingSleep DisordersSleep ProblemsSnoring

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